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Alibaba racks up $2 billion in sales in first hour of annual shopping festival


New York -- Chinese E-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holdings sold about $2 billion worth of goods on its websites within approximately the first hour of its annual shopping extravaganza.

This is the sixth year Alibaba has celebrated Singles Day, or 11.11 (named after the date, 11/11), a 24-hour deep-discount festival designed to boost sales during an otherwise weak period in China's sales calendar.

American companies joining the event, which Alibaba calls the world’s 24-hour online sale, included Costco, Kenneth Cole, American Eagle, Gap, Nike and Calvin Klein.

Last year, Alibaba logged $5.8 billion in sales in 24 hours.

This year's festival was expected to reach shoppers in more than 200 countries, the company said.
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